New Strategies in Behavior Management

The start of every school year is the moment for appropriately creating a balance among your students. At this time, you need to set clear and consistent boundaries and let your students understand the types of acceptable and unacceptable behavior. This is also the best time for creating a connection with every student and his/her family. If you can try to set limits while planting the first seeds of trust, your class will probably have a successful year. Above all, you will be creating a basis or foundation for the potential success of your students. Here are some new strategies in behavior management.

Set clear and consistent classroom rules.

Setting consistent and clear boundaries is a method that has been proven and tested by time. Other teachers prefer to create class rules with the help of their students. Some make their own rules without the help of their students. But whichever way you want to do it, remember that creating that list isn't enough. An essential part is how a teacher deals with the class rules and the students' lawbreaking daily. In the same way as a teacher gets to know her students, students also are getting to know you. Students like to test a teacher's limits. They want to see our sincerity in creating the rules; they want to know what the effects of violating classroom rules are. They'd also like to know if we are consistent and fair, if we can discipline them with dignity. When we ignore violations, we are saying to them that a certain rule isn't meaningful. It will make them wonder if the rest of the rules are authentic. However, if we overreact to their violations, we are trying to tell the class that their negative behavior is the only way to get attention. Therefore, be clear about what are tolerable behaviors or not. Make your rules meaningful and one you can consistently enforce.

Build a classroom community.

A class that is supportive, stimulating and void of teasing is a place where students can accomplish their best potential. The class becomes a safe environment for them where they feel worry-free to do educational risks and that others will not laugh at them. Your class becomes a setting where learning is the focus; it is where learning is pleasant. In some classes, the group's cause is NOT to show interest in their studies. There are also cases when students who have failed plenty of times before don't buy the learning process. For these cases, it is the major responsibility of the teacher to arouse the whole class' interest to learn. This is why a classroom community is important. When they act as a community, they will support and help each other. The support from their peers will spark their interest in learning. It will also give your students a new beginning in their educational development.

Be a good role model for respectful communication.

It is essential that students know how to respect each other and the best model for this is the teacher. Since words are powerful, a teacher should be careful in using them. A teacher's words should concentrate on the child's behavior and NOT on the student. There is a difference in saying that a particular student is lazy from saying he hasn't done his homework. It is important to consider that students will try to test is a teacher can maintain his/her respectful attitude even if they've gone too far. Whatever they do, treat them with respect. By that, you are modeling to your class how to react in a mature way during tough times.

Educational Literature on Behavior Management

Special Education Teachers Resources for Behavior Management
  1. Aggression and Cooperation: Helping Young Children Develop Constructive Strategies- ERIC Document
  2. Behavioral Disorders: Focus on Change- ERIC Document
  3. Disciplinary Exclusion of Special Education Students- ERIC Document
  4. Emotional Disturbances- ERIC Digest
  5. Functional Behavior Assessment and Behavior Intervention Plans- ERIC Document
  6. Helping Young Children Deal with Anger- ERIC Digest
  7. Managing Disruptive Student Behavior in Adult Basic Education- ERIC Document
  8. Managing Inappropriate Behavior in the Classroom- ERIC Digest
  9. Positive Discipline- ERIC Document
  10. School Discipline- ERIC Document
  11. School-Wide Behavioral Management Systems- ERIC Document
  12. Student Discipline Policies- ERIC Document
  13. Managing Inappropriate Behavior in the Classroom- ERIC Document